In this season of hikes in cost of most essential services and commodities, it's time to brace for another one. The Brihanmumbai Electricity Supply and Transport (BEST) undertaking, which runs the public bus service in the city, on Monday proposed an increase of Re1 to Rs6 for ordinary and air-conditioned bus tickets and monthly passes.
The revised fare will be tabled before the civic general body and the regional transport authority, and will be brought into immediate effect after their approval.
If okayed, the basic fare for distance between 2km and 3kmwill go up by Re1, from Rs4 to Rs5, in ordinary and limited buses. The fare will thereafter increase in distance-wise slabs - Rs10 from Rs7 for 5km, a 7km journey will be charged Rs12 instead of Rs8, and from Rs10 to Rs15 for a 10km ride.
The minimum fare for the undertaking's AC bus service is likely to go up by Rs5, while for distance of 3km and 5km, the proposed fare is Rs20 and Rs25 respectively.
Along with the tickets, the cost of monthly passes will also increase across categories. The 22-day pass for minimum distance of 2km will cost Rs220, Rs308 for 3km, and Rs440 for 10km. The 60-day pass will cost 1,200.
The burden on students will also increase - SSC students will have to pay Rs150 instead of Rs90 for a monthly pass, while HSC students will be charged Rs250, up from Rs190.
Commuters from Thane, Navi Mumbai and Mira Bhyander are likely to pay Re1 additional charge towards toll tax, which is expected to affect over 2.5 lakh commuters.
The undertaking's transport wing, which is suffering a loss of over Rs500 crore, aims to recover Rs158 crore through this fare revision. "We can assure well-maintained and clean buses if the fare is revised," said OP Gupta, general manager, BEST.